Tuesday, March 6, 2012

From my friend Subdeacon Benjamin Harju.....

.....comes this awesome series reviewing the book "A Lutheran Looks at ... Eastern Orthodoxy," by Pastor Robert J. Koester.  The first three posts in the series are presented below, and I will try to endeavor to post the rest here.  Subdeacon Harju is doing a great job articulating where the author gets us right and where he gets us wrong.  I recommend this series to anyone wishing to know more about Eastern Orthodoxy, and specifically any Lutherans or Orthodox who want to know more about the differences in our respective traditions.

I'll add this as a side note -- I've said many times that one ought to allow another's beliefs to be defined by the other.  It is rarely a good idea to learn about another tradition by reading a book authored by a member of your own.  Reading this review, and reading other Protestant critiques of the Orthodox Christian Church, has reinforced this belief over the last few years.  It is extremely hard to articulate Orthodox belief and practice correctly from within the Church.  After all, we have 2000 years of history to deal with, and there is a lot of material to cover.  It is twice as hard to do so from outside our tradition.  Which is to say, if I want to know what Lutherans believe, I'll read Lutheran authors.  If Lutherans want to know what we believe, I'd recommend they read our authors.

With that, here are the links:





Jim Huffman said...

"I've said many times that one ought to allow another's beliefs to be defined by the other."

Did you perhaps mean "one ought NOT to allow"?

David Garner said...

No, unfortunately I'm just a fan of unclear writing ;-p

What I mean is that if you and I have a conversation about what we believe, you should define what you believe and I should define what I believe. In the sentence, "another" and "the other" are the same, so "one ought to allow another's beliefs to be defined by the other" means simply that the other person should define their own beliefs.

Sorry for being unclear. I will never be accused of using a few simple words to say something when a lot of words will confuse the issue just as well.

Jim Huffman said...

Hey, I see you're an attorney. It's an occupational hazard. :) But seriously, thanks for all of your good thoughts and insights.